I decided it was about time that I took courage and applied to exhibit my work in a dedicated ceramics exhibition. Until now I have exhibited my work alongside a mix of craft disciplines – jewellery, textiles, glass, you name it – everything, a real mix. There were two objectives I had in mind, I wanted to see how my work looked alongside more experienced potters and secondly I wanted to gauge how my prices compared. I am sure I’m not alone in finding pricing one of the most difficult areas to tackle. From my observations newcomers fall into one of two categories – far too high having rigidly followed a given formula from college or far too low due to inexperience coupled with a slight feeling of lack of self-worth. I have come to the conclusion that I fall into the latter!
I was delighted and very much encouraged to be selected at my first try. There are very many highly experienced potters/ceramic artists in Northern Potters and of the names I recognise there are many whose work I greatly admire. I was asked to submit 12 pieces for the exhibition that runs for 5 weeks.
The New Schoolhouse Gallery is situated in a lovely space right next to the Quilt Museum in York. Outside there’s a garden with paved walks, it must be fabulous in Summer! The building itself is single storey and as its name suggests, a former school. The main gallery has a high ceiling and tall windows along one side.
I arrived early for the opening and my first impression was of a room full of work, lots of plinths and with every surface used to advantage. I managed to get a couple of photographs before the room filled.
Work by Ian Howie. The piece on the left entitled ‘Fishpheasantturtle’ was my husband’s favourite and I must admit I thought it pretty stunning too!
As for my work –
I was initially disappointed that only a few of the pieces I’d sent were on show but it was explained that as pieces sold they would be replaced! That showed a certain amount of confidence on the part of the organisers then! The room soon got quite busy and as none of the makers wore any name badges I hadn’t got a clue who was who. Such a shame as I would have loved to have chatted to other makers. As a rule we’re all fairly isolated and it’s only at these sort of events that we crawl out of our studios, dust ourselves off and get to meet and chat to others. A lost opportunity in my opinion!
Here are a some pieces still in the backroom and hopefully they’ll see light of day if this first lot sells!
A selection of dishes.